If you're a lover of classic RPGs, Golden Sun will find a special place in your heart.
Story 8 The story in Golden Sun is a very simple tale of four heroes forced to go on a daring quest to stop the antagonists from fulfilling their diabolic plot and rescue the friends they abducted. But even though you've played this story before, Golden Sun does a wonderful job of captivating your interest all the same. I knocked off some points as the story didn't wrap up with the end of the game. There is a sequel but, as the story wasn't truly complete, I didn't feel it deserved a full 10.
Character 7 The characters in Golden Sun do little to stand out, but for the tale they are trying to tell, it works well. The main character may not undergo harsh trials that press him to the limit and push him to mature and grow, but the game wasn't trying to force these developments either. They might be archetypes, but you will soon find yourself cheering for them to complete their mission and rescue their friends.
Game Play 10 The game play was engaging and fun. As you journeyed across the world, you would come across Djinn, summon creatures. You could set them to your characters to increase their stats and magic skills. You could also summon them into battle, though you would lose the benefits of its stat's increases for a time. Mixing different elemental Djinn on one character would result in different types of magic spells to cast, making your characters much more customizable. You also had access to certain spells outside the battle screen and use them to solve puzzles to find secret items or Djinn, some of which could prove to be challenging.
Sound 7 The limitations of the GBA prevented voices from being added to the game, which I find was probably a blessing. The background music was appealing, although nothing particularly stood out about it either.
Graphics 9 The sprites looked nice and the color scheme was bright. The world map was a bit dull but overall was very well done.
This is by FAR the best RPG on the GBA that I've ever even heard of! The chracters are engaging, the plot is interesting and has just enough twists to surprise you but not totally lose you, and the graphics and sounds are unparalleled to any other GBA game at the time. I first got it about 2 months after it came out, and yet I still find myself playing it again for the umpteenth time! If you haven't played this game yet, you are missing a really good game!